Jill Nussinow has been teaching plant-based, whole foods cooking for so long (nearly 30 years at Santa Rosa Junior College beyond) she’s earned the trademarked title “The Veggie Queen.” She’ authored four cookboks, including “The New Fast Food” and “Vegan Under Pressure” in which she shares the joys and benefits of vegetable cooking, and how to make simple dishes fast.
One method she’s explored in two of the books is the use of a pressure cooker. Even vegetarians have hectic lives, it turns out. “I’m not one of those people who do a menu plan,” she’s said. “It’s 5 o’clock, I have broccoli, romanesco, a leek and borlotti beans and I’d like to eat dinner tonight. What am I going to make? The pressure cooker answers the question of what’s for dinner.” (Two recipes below)
On Wednesday, February 14 at 4 p.m the Sonoma Valley Library hosts Nussiniow for a “Winter Vegetables: Beyond Broccoli” demo. She’ll show what’s fresh at local farmers markets, and how to choose, store and cook it. Recipes and samples included.
Space is limited and pre-registration is required. Register at Sonomalibrar.org, call 707.99.5217 or stop by the library to register. 755 West Napa Street, Sonoma.
Thai Red Curry with Winter Squash, Mushrooms, and Broccoli
“I am wowed,” says Nussinow, “by the flavor of this fusion-style dish, where winter squash pairs very well with Thai curry. The mushrooms add earthiness and a lot of texture, while the broccoli (or greens) adds freshness. If you are not familiar with lime leaves, you will likely recognize the flavor if you’ve eaten Thai food. Store the leaves in your freezer so that they are available when you need them. Galangal is a root, similar to ginger, that is used in Thai cooking. Chana dal is split chickpeas, which are used often in Indian cooking. If you can’t find them, split red lentils stand in easily. This is a perfect winter dish.” Serves 4 to 6.
1 cup sliced onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon or more minced hot chile, such as jalapeño; or ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
½ cup chana dal or split red lentils
2 pieces dried galangal slices
2 kaffir lime leaves
1¾ cups vegetable stock
½ cup regular or light coconut milk
2 teaspoons vegan Thai red curry paste
4 to 5 cups (or more) peeled cubed winter squash, such as butternut, kabocha, or acorn (1 pound)
4 ounces oyster mushrooms, sliced
1 cup broccoli florets; or 2 cups thinly sliced kale, collard greens, or Swiss chard
1 to 2 tablespoons lime juice
Chopped cilantro, for garnish
Quick release the pressure. Remove the lid, carefully tilting it away from you.
Bok Choy, Green Garlic and Greens with Sweet Ginger Sauce
“This tastes great and can be served with soba noodles or colored rice, or your favorite grain or noodle. This dish is a more than a bit beyond the ordinary.” Serves 4
1 tablespoon oil
½ leek, sliced
2 medium garlic cloves, crushed with flat side of a knife
1 1-inch thick slice of ginger root, halved and smashed with flat side of a chef’s knife blade to equal 1 teaspoon minced ginger
2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
Salt and ground black pepper
1½ pounds mustard or other greens (1 large bunch), washed well, leaves trimmed from ribs and cut into 2-inch pieces
3–4 stems green garlic, sliced into 2-inch diagonal pieces or another 2 cloves garlic, minced
1–2 cups sliced bok choy
1–2 cups pea shoots
3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
2, Sauté for 1–2 minutes. Add the mustard and other greens.
3, Add the broth and simmer for 2–3 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients except for sesame seeds.